J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2009, Vol. 51 ›› Issue (2): 122-129.

• Cell and Developmental Biology •

Accumulation and Dynamic Trends of Triterpenoid Saponin in Vegetative Organs of Achyranthus bidentata

Jinting Li and Zhenghai Hu

• Received:2007-12-29 Accepted:2008-06-11 Published:2009-02-10

Abstract: The relationship between structural features of various vegetative organs and triterpenoid saponin accumulation in Achyranthus bidentata Blume was investigated using anatomy, histochemistry and phytochemistry. The results showed that the primary and secondary structures of roots, and the structures of stems and leaves of A. bidentata, were similar to those of ordinary dicotyledonous plants. The enlargement of its roots, however, was primarily associated with growth and differentiation of tertiary structures. There were collateral medullary vascular bundles in addition to the normal vascular bundles in the stem. The tertiary structure was not only main parts in the roots of A.bidentata, but also important storage region of triterpenoid saponin in its growth and development. The stem may be the essential transport organ of triterpenoid saponin, while palisade tissue cells may be the primary synthesis location. In November, the total quantity of triterpenoid saponin and overall biomass in the roots reach a maximum level. This was the best time, therefore, to harvest the roots and corresponded to the traditional harvest period. Despite the withered appearance of leaves, stems also contained substantial amounts of triterpenoid saponin, and it was recommended that the stems of A. bidentata should be utilized.

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